Lilja Alfreðsdóttir, the Minister of Education and Culture, has sent a letter to Robert Chapek, the CEO of Walt Disney, to convince the company to make use of the Icelandic voiceover and translations on their streaming service, Disney+.
The streaming service was made available last September, however no content on the site has any Icelandic dub or subtitles.
The letter reads “Our language is the core of our nation’s culture and identity. We work hard to maintain it, especially among children and young people who are heavily exposed to other languages daily, mainly English.
We believe that comprehensive knowledge of a first language is vital for children’s personal development, education and ability to formulate thoughts and ideas. Consequently, good Icelandic skills are essential to the Icelandic youth and their future.”
Það er óboðlegt að stórveldi eins og Disney nýti ekki íslenskar talsetningar og þýðingar á streymisveitunni Disney+. Í…
Posted by Lilja Alfreðsdóttir / Mennta- og me
Lilja goes on to say that it is unacceptable that the company is not taking advantage of the translations and dubs that have brought joy to many children.
“We can’t wait forever.”
We spoke with Jóhannes Haukur Jóhannesson, famous for his roles in Game of Thrones, Noah and Atomic Blonde who believes Disney need to correct this problem.
“It’s not like we’re asking them to produce anything as they’ve done it (the dub and translation) anyway, they just need to make it available.
“We can’t wait forever. As an independent country, with our own little language that has evolved very little over a 1000 years, we have to protect it.”
“We were behind with VHS, we were behind with DvD’s and now it’s streaming services as well,” he continues. “All of a sudden, we’re not in the loop anymore and that’s worrisome for me and everyone who cares about our language.”
It remains to be seen how Disney will respond but we hope that soon, we can watch all our favourite Disney characters speak Icelandic once again.
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